Program Page | NSCC

Dovie Salais

Table of Contents OverviewWork experienceStudy optionsChoose NSCCOther infoCourses may include Overview This program prepares you to be an Automotive Service Technician who ensures vehicles are safe and operate properly. In this program, you get the knowledge and skills related to the service and repair of the mechanical and electrical systems […]


This program prepares you to be an Automotive Service Technician who ensures vehicles are safe and operate properly.

In this program, you get the knowledge and skills related to the service and repair of the mechanical and electrical systems of automobiles and light trucks. You learn how to use electrical meters, hand tools, power tools and shop equipment. You also have the opportunity to apply your skills with a work term.

If you have a strong mechanical aptitude, problem-solving skills and strong oral and written communication skills, this program provides the training you need to succeed as a technician. You gain a working knowledge of automotive shop safety, vehicle and engine systems and basic oxygen/acetylene metal inert gas welding, along with an understanding of automotive maintenance, inspection and body adjustment.

Work experience

  • Field experience (work placement) is a mandatory credit course completed at the end of your program. It provides you with the opportunity to apply your knowledge and skills outside of the classroom.
  • Opportunities are typically unpaid and last approximately 5 weeks.
  • Transportation, accommodations and other costs related to work placements are your responsibility.
  • For more information visit Work Experience Opportunities

Study options

  • This program is available for part-time study. You complete your program through a combination of online and in-class courses (some courses are delivered 100% online). In-class courses are held at Akerley Campus. No additional campus locations are available for part-time study.
  • When applying for part-time study, you must meet all the admission requirements.
  • Once admitted, you’re referred to a campus for course selection.
  • The time to complete the program through part-time study is two years.
  • Tuition for part-time study is calculated on a per-course basis and is paid at the beginning of each term.

Choose NSCC

  • This program is a first step toward certification in the Automotive Service Technician trade. To become certified, you must register as an apprentice with Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency (NSAA). Once registered, you can transfer credit from this program toward your apprenticeship.
  • This program covers many aspects of motor vehicle repair. You’re trained in the fundamentals of automotive shops skills and gain a basic understanding of how vehicle systems work. There will be opportunities to work on vehicles with specialized tools, plus an opportunity to gain work experience with an industry partner.

Other info

  • A minimum of a Class 5 Drivers Licence and the ability to drive a manual transmission vehicle is required for employment.
  • If you’re chemically sensitive, it’s important to note that chemicals (petroleum products) and lubricants are commonly used in the Automotive Service Technician trade.
  • Certification with a Red Seal – Automotive Service Technician is a designated trade in Nova Scotia. Graduates who complete an apprenticeship program in this trade are eligible to write the provincial certification exam, receive their certification and Red Seal. The Red Seal allows certified tradespersons to practise the trade in any province or territory in Canada – where the trade is designated – without having to write further examinations.
  • You require a Certificate of Qualification issued by the NSAA to legally work in the Automotive Service Technician trade in Nova Scotia.
  • This program places a high importance on providing you with skills and knowledge to work safely in industry. You participate in a number of introductory safety awareness courses to prepare for employment.
  • Industrial safety standards dictate facial hair and headwear regulations.
  • Additional skills and abilities, including math, reading and workplace skills, are essential for your success in Trades and Technology programs. See the Trades and Technology Preparation Checklist (PDF 23KB).

Courses may include

These are some of the courses offered in this program. It is not a complete list and courses are subject to change in advance of the academic year.

ASRP 1000 – Automotive Fundamental Shop Skills

This course covers the principles of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA)/WHMIS as applied to the automotive trade. Learners will be provided with an overview of the various automobile systems including, engine, driveline, chassis, and electrical. This course also covers the various components and chemicals used for automotive fastening and sealing including thread restoration and repair processes. Hand and shop tools associated with automotive service and repair will be covered. The trade certification process and apprenticeship training will also be included.

ASRP 1001 – Automotive Engine Fundamentals

In this course the learner will demonstrate an understanding of internal combustion engine theory and will perform minor engine diagnosis and service (compression tests, external gasket service, torquing techniques, and engine valve timing). Learners will also be introduced to identifying engine type, configuration, and components.

ASRP 1003 – Electrical I

Electrical and electronic systems and components are crucial to vehicle safety and operation. This course introduces basic electrical theory in an automotive context. You will have the opportunity to test and service electrical components and simple circuits using standard meters and testers. Course material also covers interpretation of wiring diagrams and symbols.

ASRP 1010 – Basic Automotive Welding

Learners in this course will acquire the theory and practical skills necessary to perform basic welding and cutting operations used in the automotive mechanical trade. Learners will perform basic oxy-fuel cutting and welding, and Metal Inert Gas (MIG) welding.

ASRP 1011 – Brakes

In this course the learner will demonstrate an understanding of automotive brake systems. Learners will service and perform preventative maintenance procedures on disc, drum, and parking brake systems. Master cylinder and basic hydraulic theory will be covered.

ASRP 1015 – Maintenance Inspections and Body Mechanical

Maintenance inspections and lubrication are key components of what automotive technicians do every day and are necessary to ensure efficient and timely service and operation of customer vehicles. Body components provide an aesthetic appeal to consumers and, more importantly, protect them in motor vehicle accidents. This course covers maintenance inspections and the operation and repair of body components and trim. Maintenance inspections and oil change will be carried out in the shop.

ASRP 1016 – Suspension

The suspension system interacts with the steering system to keep the car supported, promoting control and stability. This course introduces suspension systems and their operation. System components and procedures used to inspect and repair them are addressed. Material also introduces the relationship between the wheels and the frame to absorb any ‘shock’ energy during vehicle operation.

ASRP 1017 – Steering

The steering system is crucial to the driver’s ability to control the vehicle, and maintenance of the steering system affects the performance and life of other components. In this course you will discover the components of conventional steering systems and how they operate together to ensure safe driving. Course material presents potential problems and their solutions, along with procedures for servicing and maintenance of the steering system.

ASRP 1018 – Electrical II

Most systems in modern vehicles rely on electrical and/or electronic inputs and controls in order to function properly. In this course you will learn to test and service automotive batteries and wiring systems. You will be introduced to wiring repair techniques such as soldering and splicing, and to the procedures used to replace basic lighting components.

ASRP 1100 – Work Experience

The work experience component provides the learner with an opportunity to apply new skills and concepts appropriate for entry-level positions within the occupation. Learners will assess their own performance and be evaluated by an industry partner. Learners will identify personal outcomes they wish to attain during the work experience and will keep a journal.

COMM 1227 – Communications I

This course provides the student with an overview of the communication skills required by business and industry. Students will learn to apply these communication skills to be successful in their selected workplace setting.

COMM 1228 – Communications II

This course further develops essential communications skills with a focus on basic writing. This course provides the student with the opportunity to develop written work typical of the industry related to their program of study.

SAFE 1000 – Introduction to WHMIS (Workplace Hazardous Materials Information Systems)

This course offers learners basic overview of WHMIS principles and establishes a solid foundation to support workplace-specific training on the safe storage and handling of controlled/hazardous products. Upon successful completion of the course, students receive basic WHMIS certification.

SAFE 1001 – Introduction to NS OH&S Act

This course offers students an introduction to the Occupational Health & Safety (OH&S) Act of Nova Scotia, which is required by any person employed in a Nova Scotia workplace. This is a generic, introductory course that provides basic knowledge of the Act for students and is considered to be the basis from which more specific training can be given.

SAFE 1021 – Introduction to Hazard Identification

The learners are introduced to the types of hazards encountered in workplaces and the approach that should be followed when recommending and implementing appropriate controls. Two key elements of Hazard Identification are addressed: Hazard Assessment and Inspection. The Nova Scotia Occupational Health and Safety Act is discussed. The course material is to be infused throughout the curriculum and may be delivered in the classroom, shop or other opportunity as designed and developed by the instructor.

SAFE 1023 – Introduction to Lock Out/Tag Out

Lock-out Tag Out introduces the learner to the hazards related to energized systems and procedures to ensure worker safety. Related legislation and risk management is discussed and the learner is exposed to the various types of lock-out devices. The course material is to be infused throughout the curriculum and may be delivered in the classroom, shop or other opportunity as designed and developed by the instructor.

SAFE 1024 – Introduction to Respiratory Protection

The learner is introduced to the potential of atmospheric hazards in the workplace and the available personal protection and control methods to maintain a safe work environment. Discussion includes identification and testing for atmospheric hazards and workplace respiratory programs. The learner will be given the opportunity to select, use and maintain respiratory equipment. The course material is to be infused throughout the curriculum and may be delivered in the classroom, shop or other opportunity as designed and developed by the instructor.

WORK 1100 – Workplace Mentoring I

This unit of instruction is designed to assist learners in managing their learning as an apprentice in the workplace. Learners will study their own experiences with learning new skills and identify their own learning preferences as an aid to developing learning strategies.

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